Vietnamese Soul in APEC Attire
Minh Hanh and her staff worked all day long and had to endure countless requests and checks by government officials before her designs were approved.
She sent photos of ao dai to the APEC leaders in their homelands and received their measurements and color preferences within a month. Blue was the favorite color, requested by 11 of the 21 leaders, who also had the option of red, yellow, green or orange.
Expressing the essence of
Says Minh Hanh: “The difficulty in making the ao dai and the khan dong is that, in the sewing, you must remember that the vertical and horizontal axes stand for the honesty of an honorable man, and the five coat buttons express the philosophy of the five moral obligations. The khan dong (turbans) were wound according to a Chinese character meaning “human”.
Before settling on the final designs, Hanh examined the traditional costumes used at the APEC economic leaders’ meetings in
Her big hope is that the APEC leaders and the millions watching Sunday’s closing ceremony on television will be just as pleased with the costumes as she is.
The ceremony will be broadcast live on several Vietnam Television channels and shown by television stations throughout the world.